County news - Warwickshire September 27, 2004

Wagg admits cocaine use

Wisden Cricinfo staff



Graham Wagg faces an uncertain future in English cricket © Getty Images

Graham Wagg, the England A and Warwickshire allrounder, today pleaded guilty to using cocaine when he appeared at a preliminary hearing of an England & Wales Cricket Board disciplinary panel at Lord's. The hearing was then adjourned until October 18.

A test of a sample of his urine, taken after Warwickshire's final National League game, against Gloucestershire on September 4, was shown to have contained a derivative of cocaine. Wagg admitted he had used the drug, and the disciplinary panel moved into a full hearing where he pleaded guilty to a formal charge.

Wagg, 21, took four wickets and hit a quick half-century on his Championship debut against Somerset two years ago, and toured India with England A last winter. However, he has since been hampered by a back injury and did not play in any of Warwickshire's Championship games this season.

"Mr Wagg apologised to the disciplinary panel, Warwickshire CCC and the game of cricket at the earliest opportunity for bringing the game and his club into disrepute," Wagg said in a statement issued on his behalf. "Mr Wagg is deeply remorseful and determined to show his employers and cricket fans that he will accept the punishment meted out to him with humility and good grace.

"He will do all he can to return to top class cricket at the earliest opportunity as a better and stronger cricketer, and to learn from this difficult experience."

Wagg is not the first English cricketer to be punished for recreational drug abuse: in 1996 Ed Giddins was suspended for 18 months after traces of cocaine were found in his system.

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